Weets Eats: Worthy Provisions for a Dempsey trip
It is so easy to get excited about Provisions.
It is co-owned by two guys - chef Justin Foo worked in Restaurant Par Andre, Le Saint Julien and Senso Ristorante & Bar, while head bartender K.C. Rahmat was last at the nightclub Pangea.
The combination of their experiences resulted in a cool restaurant that serves good food and interesting drinks, with great music and a relaxed vibe that makes the nightmare of getting into - and, most annoyingly, getting out of - Dempsey worthwhile.
The restaurant bills itself as Singapore's first skewers & claypot rice cocktail bar, so when eating there, ordering an item from the claypot menu is a must.
My favourite was the Oyster Omelette Rice ($18), which had the base of gloriously charred rice and an orh luak (oyster omelette) cap.
It doesn't matter if you like the bottom or top layer because when mixed, it is comfort food times two.
Although the Seafood Rice ($16) was the least exciting option amid the claypot selection - how does one beat Oyster & Uni Rice ($28)! - its flavour was no less exciting or rich.
The rice was cooked in prawn broth, but one will taste bits of pork lard too.
Within the selection of skewers available (from $4 each) were some exciting bites.
The chicken thigh ($5) was marinated in yellow curry, kaffir lime and lemongrass, and cooked over charcoal.
But the beef tongue ($9) was my favourite. Kicap manis (a sweet sauce from Indonesia) was poured over it and the tongue was cooked till it was just about tender, but retained a little chew.
From the plates section, I was looking forward to some fried chicken when I saw KFC ($10) on the menu, but it is actually Korean Fried Cauliflower.
I'll admit I was slightly disappointed and maybe that was why I could not appreciate this fully. The sweet and spicy marinade leaned too much towards sweet, which made me feel like I was eating soggy caramel popcorn.
Be careful when you start with the Pig Ear Fritters ($12). I liked that it was spicy, slightly salty and extremely addictive: the seasoning of five spice powder, white pepper and chilli powder made it impossible to stop eating this.
It is a great thing that Provisions has many fun local cocktails - try the Bandai Bandung ($14) or the Spiced Hot Teh-Si ($17) - because you'll be snacking so much, you might as well drink too.
7, Dempsey Road
Tuesday to Thursday, 4pm to 1am, Friday and Saturday, 4pm to 2am,
Sunday, 10.30am to 3pm
PABLO HAS ARRIVED
With 39 stores in Japan and nine more worldwide, Pablo Cheese Tart Cafe has opened its first outlet in Singapore at Wisma Atria (#01-02/03, Tel: 6835-9269). The freshly baked 15cm-cheese tart is the signature dish, but you can grab coffee, smoothies and soft-serve ice cream too. It is $9.50 a slice with coffee or tea, or $15 for a whole tart.
NASI LEMAK BURGER
The Nasi Lemak Burger ($16) from mod-Sin restaurant The Quarters (Icon Village #01-09) is for those who just cannot get enough of this fusion creation. It has turmeric battered chicken thigh between lemak rice patties, sambal belacan, ikan bilis and a sunny-side up. Add $4 for a durian creme brulee.
Cafe Yellow (Millenia Walk, Tel: 9233-0627) is offering a new way to drink cold brew coffee.
It suggests you mix coconut water ($5) with cold brew coffee ($6) from Breaking Ground, a blend of Santos from Brazil, Gayo Jumbo and Black Panther from Indonesia.
The Kampung Bar at Marina Bay Sands' Epicurean Market (tomorrow to Sunday) features original cocktails with a local twist, like Laksa Remos and The Singleton Milo Peng (Singleton of Glen Ord 12 Years Old and Milo powder). Tickets are available at www.marinabaysands.com/epicureanmarke